a program of The Indianapolis Public Library Foundation

The Indiana Center for the Book and the Library of Congress

The Indiana Center for the Book and the Library of Congress

The Eugene & Marilyn Glick Indiana Authors Award partnered with the Indiana Center for the Book to create the 1816-2016 Indiana Bicentennial Literary Map. The map is a great reminder of all the literary talent, past and present, we have in Indiana. Schools across our state think so too! Read below for more about the literary maps and the many other programs the Indiana Center for the Book offers to Hoosier families. Written by Suzanne Walker and Christy Franzman, co-directors of the Indiana Center for the Book.

The Indiana Center for the Book, housed at the Indiana State Library, is an affiliate of the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress and exists to call attention to the importance of books, reading, literacy and libraries.  The Indiana Center for the Book (ICB) has several exciting programs that Hoosiers can get involved with from a book award to a writing contest.  Feel free to email us at if you have questions about any of our programs.

·         Letters About Literature – Supported by the Library of Congress, Indiana’s Letters About Literature competition is a reading and writing program where students in grades 4-12 write a letter to an author, living or deceased, whose one work made a difference in their life.  Letters are submitted to the contest in December and January of each year and are judged by a panel of Indiana librarians and writers throughout the spring.  Indiana chooses one winner from each of 3 levels of participation (grades 4-6, grades 7-8, and grades 9-12) to send to compete at the national level in Washington D. C. 

·         Indiana Early Literacy Firefly Award – The Indiana Early Literacy Firefly Award is administered by a committee of early childhood professionals in Indiana including teachers, librarians, caregivers and program coordinators.  Nominees for the award include outstanding picture books for young children that support at least three of the Every Child Ready to Read practices of Talking, Singing, Reading, Writing and Playing.  Hoosier children under the age of six vote for their favorite book among the nominees.  Their votes are tallied to determine the winner of the award.  2017 marks the third year for the award and the winner will be announced May 22nd.

·         National Book Festival – Representatives of the ICB attend the Library of Congress National Book Festival each year in Washington, D.C. and represent Indiana in the Pavilion of the States.  The Indiana booth selects and features one book by an Indiana author each year, as well as shares information about popular sites to visit in our great state.


·         Indiana Young Readers Center – Opened in October 2016, the Indiana Young Readers Center (IYRC) is a place for kids and teens at the Indiana State Library.  Inspired by the Library of Congress Young Readers Center, the IYRC is the first to be opened in a state library.  The IYRC features books by Indiana authors and illustrators for children and teens.  Interactive exhibits in the Center allow children to learn about Indiana authors, genealogy, research and facts about Indiana.  The IYRC also include Clifford the Big Red Dog’s doghouse, a perfect spot to read a book or put on a puppet show!


·         1816-2016 Indiana Bicentennial Literary Map – Published by the ICB in partnership with the Eugene & Marilyn Glick Indiana Authors Award, the Indiana Writers Center, Indy Reads, Indiana Humanities, Brick Street Poetry and the Indiana State Library Foundation, the new literary map highlights 200 Indiana writers across many genres and historical periods. From our earliest writers like Sarah T. Bolton to contemporary writers like John Green, the map celebrates 200 years of Indiana’s literary history.  You can still order copies of the map by filling out this form

·         Bookmark Design Competition – In partnership with INFO Express, the library courier system that connects the state’s libraries together, ICB offers a contest once a year for Indiana school children in grades K-3 to design a bookmark based on the current year’s theme.  The winning school gets free INFO Express delivery for a year and their winning design is printed on bookmarks that are distributed each year at the National Book Festival.